Whether you are a dog or cat person (why not be both?!) you must have heard the saying that a dog is a man’s best friend, which is difficult to contradict. No matter if they are active, loyal guardians, chubby entertainers (ever seen a pug doing zoomies?) or gentle companions, dogs guarantee their owners unconditional love, slobbering kisses and endless walks in the rain.
The USPS recently issued a set of stamps honouring working dogs – German shepherd, Dutch shepherd, Belgian Malinois and Labrador retriever. Although very different in temperament what connects these breeds is helping human kind. From therapeutic tasks to the police action, all of these dog breeds are known for, with proper training, devoting their lives to serious work next to their human companion.
USA – 2019/08/01
Military Working Dogs
So, in honour of our best friends, loyal companions and dedicated workers, in this article we will address the most famous dogs – those portrayed through pop culture, for the most part film.
ROUGH COLLIE – LASSIE
Rough Collie or Scottish Shepherd, Scot, Scottish Collie or sometimes just Collie was originally bred for sheep breeding in Scotland.
This is one of the most famous breeds in the world today due to the character of Lassie, created by Eric Knight in a short story published in 1938. Lassie Come Home. Lassie was first screened in 1943 in the movie Lassie Come Home with actors Roddy McDowall and Elizabeth Taylor.
The story revolves around the Turner Family – dad, stepmom, little Jennifer and teenager Matt – who leave the city for the wilds of Virginia. The move creates problems for everyone, especially Matt, who feels lost and alone in his new surroundings. Fortunately, the Turners are helped by a homeless collie who becomes part of their lives – and Matt does a lot of growing up as a result of the dog’s unflinching loyalty.
“I have yet to see one completely unspoiled star, except for the animals – like Lassie.”
The first film was followed by two more sequels (from 1946 and 1949), the Lassie Radio Show (1949), a total of 3 television series (between 1950 and 1990) and the re-release of the original film in 2006.
Lassie is one of only three animals to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In 2005, the Variety Show Business Journal ranked Lassie as one of the 100 all-time icons.
Rough Collie is a very intelligent and friendly dog, but requires a lot of attention and positive emotions. They are calm but know how to play well. The shepherd instinct is still strongly present. The Scottish Shepherd is very loyal to the owner and behaves protectively, he is especially careful with children. He cannot stand punishment or shouting and tends to be stubborn.
Monaco – 2003/03/24
International Dog Show, Monte Carlo
ST. BERNARDS – BEETHOVEN
St. Bernards is a breed of dog first mentioned in the 17th century which comes from Italy and Switzerland. He appears under quite a few names out of which maybe the most interesting is Barry Dog after the most famous Bernardine known for saving over 40 lives. Perhaps his greatest glory was achieved by appearing in the series of films ‘Beethoven’ 1, 2, 3 and 4.
Beethoven is a family comedy film, which centres on a St. Bernard dog named after the composer Ludwig van Beethoven and is owned by the Newton family. Unfortunately, even after proving his canine credentials to mom and the kids, the heroic hound who escaped dognappers as a puppy, gets nowhere with uptight dad, George. But when a beastly veterinarian makes Beethoven the target of an unspeakable animal experiment, George becomes the only hope for saving the Newton’s furriest family member.
“I love you, too. Thanks Beethoven, you saved my life but you better go home now. Mom said to stay in the back yard.”
Known as a classic example of a gentle giant, the Saint Bernard is calm, patient and sweet with adults, and especially children. However, St. Bernards like all very large dogs, must be well socialized with people and other dogs.
Bulgaria – 1964/08/20
CAIRN TERRIER – TOTO
Perhaps the most famous dog on this list along Lassie, but certainly the least known breed is the Cairn Terrier. The Cairn Terrier is one of the oldest terrier breeds, originating in the Scottish Highlands and recognized as one of Scotland’s earliest working dogs. They are usually left-pawed, which has been shown in dogs to correlate to superior performance in tasks related to scent.
Terry, a female Cairn Breeder Terrier has appeared in one of the most famous films of all time – The Wizard of Oz as a little friend of the main character Dorothy – Toto. Terry also appeared in 16 other movies.
“Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore.”
The Wizard of Oz is a 1939 American musical fantasy film. Widely regarded to be one of the greatest films in cinema history, it is the most commercially successful adaptation of L. Frank Baum’s 1900 children’s book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.
It centres around Dorothy Gale and her dog Toto who are swept away from a farm in Kansas to a magical land of Oz in a tornado and embarks on a quest with her new friends to see the Wizard who can help her return home to Kansas and help her friends as well.
Befitting his breed, Toto was everything a terrier was designed to be – sturdy, plucky, hardy, spirited. “He stands up on his toes”, is an old saying about terriers in general.
USA – 1990/03/25
Series “Classic Film Posters”
DALMATIAN – 101 DALMATIAN
Dalmatian dog is a very old dog breed easily recognizable by its white hair with characteristic black or rusty spots. The famous spots are unique to Dalmatian dogs, no other purebred breed has these marks. The breed is named after the Croatian province, Dalmatia, which is believed to be the original place of origin of the Dalmatian dog.
Dalmatians and their special look were made popular by One Hundred and One Dalmatians, a 1961 American animated adventure film produced by Walt Disney Productions and based on the 1956 novel The Hundred and One Dalmatians by Dodie Smith. The cartoon has evolved into a franchise within which is still the most famous feature film from 1996. starring Glenn Close as Cruella de Vill, an evil high-fashion designer plots to steal Dalmatian puppies in order to make an extravagant fur coat, but instead creates an extravagant mess.
“Get down from there, and CATCH THOSE PUPPIES!”
Cruella De Vil
The Dalmatian dog is a cheerful and playful dog, loyal to his family but full of energy and requires a lot of movement.
Yugoslavia – 1970/05/25
This article covered the 104 most famous movie dogs – Lassie, Beethoven, Toto and all the dalmatians. Maybe next time we’ll cover all the animated man’s best friends – from Goofy to Snoopy!
What are the most important stamp exhibitions we can expect in the rest of 2019 and 2020? Today we’ll try to answer that by listing some of the upcoming events you should visit if you’ll have a chance. Have you ever been to a stamp show? If so, great. If not, why not? You can check what it looks like in this video
In order to help you organize yourself and your work-life-philately balance, we’ll list few upcoming stamp events that seem to be interesting in its’ own way – either they are well known, either smaller but having something special.
“Collecting, especially of the classifying sort epitomized by stamp collecting, offered a means to seem to gain control of the world and of the past.” – Russell W. Belk, Collecting in a Consumer Society
The modell-hobby-spiel shall be held for the 24th time in Leipzig from October 3 (Thursday) to October 6 (Sunday), 2019 in Leipzig Exhibition Centre. It’s not exclusively related to philately so you could find other interesting stuff there:
- Car, aircraft and ship model-building
- model-building accessories
- Model railways of all gauges
- Dolls, teddy bears, stuffed toys, toys
- Board, dice, card and other games
- Robotics, 3D-Printing, Electronic
- Material for graphics, artists and hobbies
- Creative arts and painting accessories.
In 2018, the 625 exhibitors from 13 countries took part at the show and presented their industry overview and new products.
For more details visit their website: https://www.modell-hobby-spiel.de/de/
The 39th Lanaphil shall take place on Sunday, October 6, 2019, in Lana, South Tyrol (northern Italy) from 9 am to 2 pm. While this is no major philatelic event, it’s still a very interesting one. It all started on October 22, 2000, when Albert Innerhofer organized the first gathering. This year we can expect some 50 exhibitors and collectors from Italy, Austria, Germany, Belgium, and the Czech Republic. In the past, many other countries were represented at the exhibition – Switzerland, France, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Great Britain, even the USA, and Japan.
You can expect old, historical postcards, stamps, personalized stamps, coins, letters, pre philately, postal stationery, holy pictures, militaria, banknotes, telephone cards, Tirolensien and other books, engravings, historical stocks and securities, and old photos.
If you miss this one, be sure not to miss 40th (April 19, 2020) and 41st (October 4, 2020) edition.
“The great collectors of stamps were all men of passion. If they did not have passion when they started collecting, they soon developed it, for there is no mistress so demanding as stamps” – Claude Stanush, “You Just Don’t Know What Stamps Can Do To A Man” (LIFE Magazine, May 3, 1954)
Postex is the Dutch National Event taking place yearly in October/November in Apeldoorn. The Postex foundation, a joint venture of the Royal Dutch Association of Philatelic Associations (KNBF), the Dutch Association of Postage Stamp Merchants (NVPH) and PostNL, is celebrating this year the 20th anniversary of the POSTEX show.
Dates from November 22 till November 24, 2019, are reserved for the 133rd edition of Veronafil taking place at the District Verona Fair – Hall 9. It’s organized by the Scaligera Philately & Numismatics Society of Verona (A.F.N.S). The organization itself was founded in Verona on July 2nd, 1933. According to their webpage, the society has the following goals:
- To facilitate contacts between member collectors.
- To enable exchanges of stamps between members.
- To create a specific library.
- To audit important pieces.
- To place catalogs and magazines at the members’ disposal.
At the show, we can expect philately, numismatics, postcards, old prints and books, small antiques.
“Rare stamps are like fingerprints: You can trace them as they’ve traded in auctions back almost a hundred years.” – Bill Gross, “Bill Gross On Stamp Collecting” (Forbes, October 11, 2010)
The 14th International Collectors Fair Collecta will be held next on 13th and 14th March 2020 at the Gospodarsko razstavišče, Ljubljana, Slovenia.
The event includes a creative workshop for children, called “Play with Stamps” organized by Post of Slovenia. After that Slovenian Museum of Natural History will have another workshop for children, named “My dinosaurs”. The lecture that covers the history of Slovenian philately as well auction of collectibles, old books and prints are also part of the program.
“The thrill of the quest, the desire to hunt down that really rare stamp that you read about when you were at school and there’s almost the feeling that when you’ve got it you’re not so interested any more and you move on to the next one.” – Simon Garfield, The Error World: An Affair with Stamps
NZ2020 (the 37th FIAP Asian Exhibition) is organized after the successful SINGPEX 2019 (the 36th FIAP Asian Exhibition). Both of these are organized by FIAP (Federation of Inter-Asian Philately). The exhibition shall take place in Auckland, New Zealand, from March 19 to March 22, 2020. NZ2020 has chosen the theme “maritime heritage and water” – both significant to New Zealand and its way of life.
You can expect a large number of exhibitors from many different countries in the FIAP region. The main goals of the exhibition are:
- To expand and develop friendly relations and close cooperation among FIAP members; and
- To promote every aspect of philately in the FIAP region.
Check how everything went in Australia 2017 in this video (insert video, not link in the article!):
The London2020 exhibition shall take place from May 2 until May 9, 2020, obviously in London (to be more precise – at the Business Design Centre in Islington). “This will be an international, granted FIP Patronage, with competitive classes in Championship, Traditional, Postal History, Thematic, Revenue, Postal Stationery, Aerophilately, Open, Picture Postcards, One Frame, Modern, Literature and Youth.”
“Acquiring the stamp you’ve been searching for and placing it into your album might be the most thrilling part the stamp collecting hobby, but properly maintaining your collection might be the most important part.” – William F. Sharpe, “Keeping & Maintaining a High-Quality Stamp Collection” (Linn’s Stamp News, August 25, 2016)
If you’re interested in events taking place in the USA, please check them on the following link. You’ll find some of the previously mentioned exhibitions, but also a number of the USA-based events there.
You can also check atmosphere at the show at this link: StampShow 2015 – U.S. World Stamp Show – NY 2016 Stamp Ceremony
We can’t list them all
|1/9/19||Ath (B)||21st PHILATELIA||Institut Vauban|
av. Vauban 6
|6-7/9/19||Letnany (CZ)||Sberatel|| PVA Letnany – Prague Exhibition Centre Letnany |
667 Beranovych , Prague 9 – Letnany, Czech Republic
|11-14/9/19||London (UK)||Autumn STAMPEX||Business Design Centre|
52, Upper Streer
|1-6/10/19||Viana do Castelo (P)||Atlantic-AlpenAdria||Cultural Center|
500 years of the Post Office in Portugal
|4-6/10/19||Budapest (HU)||HUNFILA2019||Stefania Palota|
Stefania ut 34-36
|11-13/10/19||Dublin (IE)||STAMPA2019||Griffith College|
|12-13/10/19||Mamer (LU)||MAMER2019||Mamer Schlass|
|18-20/10/19||Copenhagen (DK)||COPENHAGEN2019||Exhibition “The Philatelic Society of Copenhagen” – 100 years|
|18-20/10/19||St-Pölten (AT)||ÖVEBRIA2019||Arena Nova, Halle 4, Rudolf DieselStr. 30, Wiener Neustadt|
|5-11/11/19||Santander (ES)||EXFILNA2019||Central Library Cantabria|
We hope this article will help you make the decision to visit at least one event. Please share your experiences with stamp exhibitions so far. And of course, write down in the comments which exhibitions we missed and you would add them.
The 2019 Tour de France started on July 8, 2019, in Brussels in honor of the 50th anniversary of the first Tour de France win of Eddy Merckx, and ends on July 28, 2019, in Paris (Champs-Élysées). The 3.460km race is divided into 21 stages. Be sure to be prepared for the race with some fun facts we’ll cover in the today’s article.
#1 1st Tour de France
In 1903, Henri Desgrange, an editor of L’Auto and cyclist, creates the Tour de France trying to keep cyclists interested in his magazine. The idea was to hold the tour around France. There was an entry fee of 10 Francs and the prize of 20.000 Francs. That was enough to attract 79 cyclists to sign up for the race and 60 of them to show at the start. Maurice Garin went into history, winning the 1st edition of the Tour. He was one of the 21 cyclists who completed the race.
#2 2nd edition of the Tour
The second Tour was very interesting for two reasons. We had the youngest winner, 19 years old Henri Cornet. Besides that, Maurice Garin once more went into history. He actually finished first and was the original winner. Henri Cornet was actually 5th. But… Well, Maurice Garin and 11 more cyclists (including all of the first four) were disqualified due to the usage of the train along the way. Smart move, but they were caught 🙂
#3 Most Successful Nations
France and Belgium are the two most successful nations on the Tour with 36 and 18 wins. Spain has 12 and Italy has 10. Great Britain has 6 titles, Luxembourg 5, United States 3, Netherlands and Switzerland 2. Denmark, Germany, Ireland, and Australia have 1 title.
#4 Tour de France 2019
Tour de France 2019 is the 106th edition of the Tour. Since the Tour had been held first in 1903 and is held every year, we obviously lack 11 of them. The Tour wasn’t held from 1915 to 1918 (World War I), and 1940 to 1946 (World War II).
#5 Tour de France is very popular
According to some statistics, Tour de France is much more popular than some other well-known events. While methodology could be questionable, it seems that the Tour has around 3.5 billion viewers leaving events like FIF World Cup, (summer) Olympic Games, Winter Olympics, and Super Bowl far behind.
#6 How hard it really is?
If we want to keep it short & simple – extremely hard. Taking into consideration that cyclists starting the Tour are professionals and in a perfect condition the information that around 20% of them completes the race tells you everything. In 1919 only 10 riders managed to finish the Tour. The amount of sweat, tears, and calories burned along the way is something we won’t experience in our “normal” lives. During the Tour history, 3 riders died during the competition and 1 more drowned during the rest day.
#7 Alcohol and cigarettes
You wouldn’t probably expect it today, but yes, both of these two were popular in the past. Alcohol was used to relieve the pain while cigarettes were believed to open the lungs and prepare them for climbs. We know better than this today 🙂
#8 Lance Armstrong
Lance Armstrong held most wins on the Tour with 7 consecutive wins from 1999 to 2005. Still, he was disqualified due to the use of doping. He admitted everything to Oprah Winfrey in a TV interview. It’s interesting to mention that he was sued for breaching the contract while racing under the U.S. Postal Service sponsorship.
#9 Most Wins
With Lance Armstrong being disqualified, we have 4 cyclists who won the Tour 5 times. These 4 great are:
- Jacques Anquetil (France, 1957, 1961, 1962, 1963, and 1964),
- Eddy Merckx of (Belgium, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972, and 1974),
- Bernard Hinault (France, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1982, and 1985),
Miguel Indurain (Spain, the first competitor to win five consecutive races from 1991 to 1995).
#10 Let’s wrap-up everything with few cycling jokes
“Learn to ride a bicycle. You will not regret it if you live.” – Mark Twain
Did you hear about the idiot who won the Tour De France? He did a lap of honor.
A cyclist lying on his deathbed asked his best friend to do him a favor when he’d gone. “Anything,” replied his friend. “Just don’t let my wife sell my bikes for what I told her I paid for them,” he begged. – Caroline Hirsch
A vicar was stopped by the police at night for not having a backlight. The vicar says: “I don’t need a backlight; the Lord is with me”. The policeman says: “Two on a bike as well, that’s another offense”. – Dave Connor
With everything said, we can now sit back and relax and watch the Tour. And, of course, consider a new topic for our collection.
Pictures: Stampsoftheworld.co.uk, WNS
I guess most of us, if not all of us, have at least heard of the monarchs of Great Britain. Some will know more about their reign and the role they played in the History of Great Britain. Some will even be informed about less-known details. But today, it is about their doings and how they were related to philately.
Queen Victoria (r. 1837-1901) / The Hanoverians
It’s really hard to describe everything related to stamps and philately that happened during the Victorian age. Before the invention of the first postage stamp, letters were franked with seals equivalent to postmarks. While Royal Mail was established in 1516, the first postage stamp – the Penny Black – and what will become the modern postal system, were introduced only in more than 3 centuries later in 1840.
This resulted from the need to avoid payments being collected from the recipient. Because also the recipient could refuse the mail and hence to pay for it. Moreover when accepted, handling money on the spot had a lot of disadvantages.
The contest was organized to get the best design, but none of the received had been used. Instead, the silhouette of Queen Victoria was used (based on a sketch provided by Henry Corbould, Charles Heath and his son Frederick engraved the portrait).
The Two Pence Blue was planned together with the Penny Black and was used to send letters with the weight of full ounce (Penny Black was used for letters up to half an ounce).
The following year, Penny Red was introduced as a replacement for Penny Black. The most important reason was that the cancellation mark on Penny Black was difficult to see.
Besides that, there were many other innovations in the Victorian age (source: Royal Mail):
- In 1852 the first pillar box was introduced (in green color).
- In September 1868, 3 cats worked on probation at the Money Order Office in London, with an allowance of one shilling a week. For extra snack they were supposed to catch mice.
- In 1870 state-owned post-operated telegraph service was formed.
- In 1874 pillar boxes were painted red and in 1879 their design changed to the one still used today.
King Edward VII (r. 1901-1910) / The House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha
King Edward VII ruled Great Britain from 1901 to 1910. His reign was brief from a postal aspect. There were no major post-related events during his reign. Maybe I would mention that starting from 1909 people could collect their pensions at local Post Offices.
King George V (r. 1910-1936) / The House of Windsor
‘Seahorses’ is the name used to refer to the United Kingdom high-value definitive postage stamps issued during the reign of King George V.
The stamps are notable for the quality of the engraving and the dramatic design which depicts Britannia on her chariot behind three writhing horses on a stormy sea. The stamps represent a collecting field in their own right for some philatelists due to the color variations and different printers. (wikipedia.org)
KIng George V ruled Great Britain during the period of World War I and this during this period two important things happened. While the boys were at war, girls were employed in Post Offices in huge numbers, ~20000. Besides surviving and food, letters from home and sent to home were very important for the morale of the troops.
During his reign following important philately/post-related events took place:
- As a part of the celebrations for his Coronation on 9th September 1911, the first scheduled airmail service from Hendon to Windsor began.
- In 1912, the Post Office took over the national telephone service.
- In 1919, the first public overseas airmail service began – flying between London and Paris.
- In 1930, some boxes were painted in bright blue to promote the Air Mail service.
- 1934 was a year for the rocket experiment. It wasn’t successful, so the whole idea had been abandoned.
King Edward VIII (r. 06/1936-12/1936) / The House of Windsor
King Edward VIII spent only a few months on the throne and during that period no major philately-related events happened.
King George VI (r. 1936-1952) / The House of Windsor
King George VI ruled Great Britain during World War II and that caused many problems in general. Postal service was not the exception and during the war, many installations were destroyed with most notably the Central Telegraph Office in St Martin’s-le-Grand.
There was one important innovation during his reign:
- In 1943, Colossus was designed at the Post Office Research Station in Dollis Hill. This was the world’s first electronic, digital and programmable computer.
Queen Elizabeth II (r. 1952-) / The House of Windsor
Queen Elizabeth II succeeded the throne on 6th February 1952, following the death of her father. She is the current monarch of Great Britain and during this (almost 70) years, a lot had happened in the World but also in philately. Some of the important events were:
- A lot had been invested in the automatization of sorting processes. Some improvements were made in the late 1950s and continued in the 1960s.
- “Arnold Machin created the plaster cast of Queen Elizabeth II for a new set of definitive postage stamps.” (Royal Mail); This motif is well-known from many GB stamps and I guess there is almost no stamp collector without at least 1 stamp with this motif.
- In 1968, the Post Office introduced current account banking.
- In 1974, (postal) coding of the whole country was finalized.
- In 1985, the OCR (Optical Character Recognition) had been introduced. This enabled the computer to read addresses and sorting mail went to the whole new level.
- 2003 was the last year when the Mail Rail operated.
- In 2006 Online Postage was introduced. This is a set of online postal services, including downloading and printing stamps.
- 2016 was the 500th birthday of the Royal Mail.
Royal Mail started more than 500 years ago and first stamps were used almost 180 years ago. Of course, everything changed during that period, but the way we communicate changed maybe the most. In 1840 stamps were innovation and sending paper mail was pretty much of a hype. Most of the paper stuff we receive these days are utility bills or advertisement mail and most of the mails don’t have any stamps on them. Stamps are slowly but surely going into history. Still, that will add more value to them as they age (in case more people would be interested in philately).
- Queen Victoria (r. 1837-1901): https://www.royal.uk/queen-victoria
- King Edward VII (r. 1901-1910): https://www.royal.uk/edward-vii
- King George V (r. 1910-1936): https://www.royal.uk/george-v
- King Edward VIII (r. 06/1936-12/1936): https://www.royal.uk/edward-viii
- King George VI (r. 1936-1952): https://www.royal.uk/george-vi
- Queen Elizabeth II (r. 1952-): https://www.royal.uk/her-majesty-the-queen
The Eurovision Song Contest is one of those European events well-known and very popular outside Europe. The Netherlands won the 2019 contest in Tel Aviv, Israel, but the magic started more than 60 years ago on May 24, 1956, in Lugano, Switzerland. History shall remember that Lys Assia won the first contest on behalf of France, with the song “Refrain”.
Winner of the Eurovision Song Contest 2019
While 2019 belongs completely to Duncan Laurence and the song “Arcade“, in this article we’ll try to cover a few more interesting facts related to the Eurovision Song Contest. For now, let’s stay in 2019. The contest was held in Tel Aviv, Israel thanks to Netta and her triumph in Lisbon in 2018, with the song “Toy”.
Fun Fact: The Eurovision Song Contest 1980 was held in The Hague/The Netherlands. The 1979 winner came from Israel, Gali Atari and Milk and Honey with song “Hallelujah”
How does History repeats herself sometimes ?…
Being the biggest music show in the world also brings a lot of responsibility and this contest again succeeded in spreading the message of love and equality from the stage and in the audience. Therefore, it’s not surprising to see a number of rainbow flags in the audience. The Eurovision song contest contributed a lot to freedom of speech and love, probably starting in 1961 when Jean-Claude Pascal won with the song “Nous les amoureux“, continuing with the victory of a transsexual woman, Dana International in 1998 (Israel, song “Diva”) and going even further in 2014 when a drag queen Conchita Wurst won on behalf of Austria with the song “Rise Like a Phoenix“.
Winners by country
For the Netherlands, the 2019th edition was the 5th time the country won the Eurovision song contest title.
Still, during history, some countries performed much better. Ireland still holds the record with 7 Eurosong titles, followed by Sweden with 6 titles.
The 3rd place is shared by 4 countries: Luxembourg, France and the United Kingdom and the Netherlands with 5 titles each. Israel won 4 times, while Denmark and Norway did the same 3 times.
Most famous contestants
Though it would be completely unfair to say some winners were better or more famous than the others, we cannot ignore that ABBA has also competed in the Eurosong. It’s interesting that while they tried to compete several times, they managed to participate only once and, of course, win (1974 in Brighton with song “Waterloo”). Still, there are some other famous names that took part in the contest.
Céline Dion won on behalf of Switzerland with the song “Ne partez pas sans moi“, in the 1988 contest, held in Dublin, on April 30. Julio Iglesias, was 4th for Spain, in the 1970 contest (held in Barcelona from February 12 to February 14) with the song “Gwendolyne“. Sir Cliff Richard (born Harry Roger Webb), won 2nd place for the UK in the 1968 contest (song “Congratulations“) and 3rd place in the 1973 contest (song “Power To All Our Friends“).
Several other celebrities took part in the contest or national qualifications, like Enya (Ireland, 1973), Olivia Newton-John (UK, 1974), Michael Ball (UK, 1992), Katie Price (UK, 2005), and Kym Marsh (UK, 2006).
Multiple Eurosong winners
OK, the Nethelands, won the Eurosong title this year. We could list all winners during the years when the contest was held, but we won’t do that. Still, something unusual happened in 1969, the year of Apollo 11 mission.
In 1969, there was no rule for the tie on Eurosong, so 4 countries (France, the Netherlands, Spain, UK) with 18 points shared the victory.
Who wasn’t part of the show?
Even though the name would suggest the participants are (only) European counties, that is not the case. While some countries were admitted for political reasons, some got admitted for huge popularity Eurosong has in their countries – last example being Australia who first competed in 2015.
There are also some countries that expressed the interest to be the part of the show but never actually made it.
They are (in alphabetical order): Catalonia, China, Faroe Islands, Gibraltar, Greenland, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Lebanon, Liechtenstein, Qatar, Scotland, Soviet Union, Tunisia, Wales. Reasons were mostly political or the fact that some of them are actually not internationally recognized countries.
Eurovision Asia Song Contest 2019
As previously mentioned, the Eurovision Song Contest has outgrown Europe a long time ago. Not only that it’s extremely popular outside Europe, but there is a growing number of participating countries not located inside Europe. The growing popularity of Eurosong outside Europe resulted with a new musical project, the Eurovision Asia Song Contest.
Starting in 2019, the Eurovision Asia Song Contest 2019 will take place for the first time. It will be held from November 30 to December 7, 2019, at the Gold Coast Convention Centre, Gold Coast, Australia. The expected participants are: Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Maldives, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Korea, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Vanuatu, Vietnam. Please notice that Australia is here too, even though they are also not located in Asia (like Europe – just saying 🙂 I just hope they use a different song 😀 Personally, I’m looking forward to seeing what they come up with.
You may remain calm. No matter if Brexit actually happens or not, there won’t be Eurosong Brexit.
The Eurovision Song Contest is really something special. Taking into account how popular it is at the moment, and that its popularity is growing, we can expect to get a better show each year. And, of course, a lot of Eurosong-related stamps. To me, this sounds like a really nice topic for the collection
Game of Thrones Season 8 is coming very soon. The first episode shall be aired on April 14, 2019. While we wait to see who will rule the Iron Throne let’s remind ourselves of a two great Game of Thrones-related stamp series (and what happened in the season 7).
Game of Thrones – Tourism Ireland 2016
Before we start the story, I’ll tell a few words about these stamps. Northern Ireland served as a headquarters for shooting the series so it’s no wonder that the Tourism Ireland in collaboration with the Royal Mail issued Game of Thrones related stamp series. Each stamp is tied to one episode of the 6th season. It’s important to mention that these stamps were issued in very limited editions and their sale was mostly limited to Northern Ireland.
Game of Thrones – Season 7 Recap
Season 7 was very deadly. That’s not so unexpected if you look at what happened in previous seasons. George R.R. Martin proved to be really good at murdering characters as soon as you start to love or hate them. While this could be frustrating, it definitely adds the tempo to the whole story. Personally, I felt very surprised a few times. And just “normally” surprised a few more times 🙂
Season 7 – Deaths
With that said, the season 7 took many lives. Some had a major role in the whole story, while others had a smaller impact. George decided that season 7 will be the final season for House Frey, Obara Sand, Nymeria Sand, Tyene Sand, Olenna Tyrell, Randyll Tarly, Dickon Tarly, Thoros of Myr, Benjen Stark, Viserion (?), Lord Petyr Baelish (Littlefinger). Let’s now take a look what happened to those who survived the season 7.
Daenerys Targaryen & Jon Snow
So, Daenerys sailed to Westeros at the end of the season 6. It was just a matter of time when she would meet Jon Snow.
Daenerys (Dany, Daenerys Stormborn, Daenerys Stormborn of House Targaryen, rightful heir to the Iron Throne, rightful Queen of the Andals and the First Men, Protector of the Seven Kingdoms, the Mother of Dragons, the Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, the Unburnt, the Breaker of Chains) is mostly interested in reclaiming the throne that belonged to her father, Aerys II Targaryen, commonly called “the Mad King”.
On the other hand, Jon Snow is more concerned about the threat coming from the North and the Night King’s invasion. At the beginning, Dany and others don’t take that threat too seriously, but things change after the expedition captures a wight beyond the Wall and presents it in front of the others.
It all ends with an alliance between Jon and Daenerys. And the alliance was sealed with a kiss. While we know the nature of a family relation between Jon and Daenerys, they still need to find that out. Of course, the most interesting part here will be how they will react and how that will affect their current relationship. And all that, of course, if they survive.
Starks & Littlefinger
The other major event is the reunification of the Stark kids. Sansa Stark is now the Lady of Winterfell and Brann is Three-Eyed Raven. Arya Stark, after a few seasons, finally found her way to Winterfell. While Littlefinger did his best to turn Arya and Sansa against each other, in the end he was the one who was manipulated and ended up executed.
Game of Thrones – Royal Mail 2018
And this is how the Royal Mail explained the motivation to issue these stamps:
“The Game of Thrones production involves a very significant British contribution. Principal filming of the series is at Titanic Studios in Belfast, at the Linen Hill Film Studio in Banbridge and on location elsewhere in Northern Ireland, with additional filming in Scotland and European locations including Malta, Croatia, Iceland, Morocco, and Spain.
Additionally, the acclaimed cast is predominantly British and Irish, and British expertise is to the fore in many areas of the production, including award-winning costume design and prosthetic special effects.”
The Night King
While houses south of the Wall fought for supremacy and the Iron Throne, the Night King, slowly but steadily gathered his army and is finally ready to move south to conquer the whole of Westeros. Killing Viserion, one of Daenerys’ dragons, and resurrecting him, turned his army even stronger and we saw them crossing the Wall. While in previous seasons he was more of a myth, now he’s here and almost nobody has any doubts if he really exists. Still, one important question needs to be answered and that is who he really is and how he’s related to other characters.
Cersei Lannister & Euron Greyjoy
Cersei is ready the exploit the current situation and is relying on Euron to bring her more troops and help her stay on the Iron Throne. She simply wants to be aside while other armies crush each other and to deal with what is left on the battlefield afterwards. That is not a bad tactic at all. You could use it in many multiplayer strategy games, either board or computer games. But that’s not the topic here. Besides that, we know that Cersei is pregnant.
Samwell Tarly, Tyrion Lannister, Jaime Lannister
There are a lot of “smaller” threads that could play an important role in the history of Westeros. Maybe the most important one is the story of Samwell Tarly. He did some great things from the first time we met him and I somehow have a feeling that he’ll play a very important role in the last 6 episodes of season 8.
Putting Tyrion and Jaime after everyone previously mentioned is maybe not fair because they have really complex stories and will have a crucial impact on the whole story. While we can expect that Tyrion will pull one more trick, it will be interesting to see what is Jaime’s destiny.
There are numerous theories on how it will all end and I don’t want to go into that. To be completely honest, I’ve watched a number of videos with different theories and I simply don’t want to know. I want to be surprised and I believe that will happen. No matter what happens, these stamps give us the ability to store the part of this Westeros history in our albums.
Author: E. Drkušić / https://stamp.ninja
Marvel Studios’ Captain Marvel movie is in cinemas from March 8, 2019. Royal Mail issued 15 stamps related to Marvel Comics on March 14, 2019. It’s (no) coincidence that the year 2019 is Marvel’s 80th birthday. So, let’s take a look at the stamps, facts and the (hi)story behind these Marvel superheroes.
Spider-Man is, according to many lists you can find online, the most popular Marvel superhero of all times. It’s pretty hard to list all comic books, movies and other forms where he starred. He started his career in August 1962 in Amazing Fantasy #15 and, of course, Stan Lee had his fingers involved.
His “real name” is Peter Parker and he started as a sidekick to other protagonists. During the time his popularity grew. This was mostly because his problems as a teen superhero were close to the problems of the majority of his readers (at the time). It’s easier to feel a connection to a superhero who is human and has school, family and love-related issues, than with godlike heroes or billionaires. Although there’s no doubt that godlike superheroes and billionaires could also be a great role model 🙂 As it usually goes with everything, from music to comic books characters (in this example), Peter grew together with his audience and got himself a job and a family and new kinds of problems. Still, he always had some time to save the world.
Captain Marvel is not 1, not 2, not 3, but 7 different superheroes from the Marvel Universe. It all started with Mar-Vell in December 1967 (Marvel Super-Heroes #12). The six Captains which followed were: Monica Rambeau (1982, The Amazing Spider-Man Annual #16), Genis-Vell (1993, Silver Surfer Annual #6), Noh-Varr (2000, Marvel Boy #1), Phyla-Vell (2004, Captain Marvel (vol. 5) #16), Khn’nr (2007, Civil War: The Return) and Carol Danvers (1968, Marvel Super-Heroes #13).
Carol was intentionally mentioned the last because she’s the main character of the 2019 movie, Captain Marvel. Brie Larson is Captain Marvel, Samuel L. Jackson plays Nick Fury and Jude Law stars as Yon-Rogg etc.
Terry Gene Bollea. Most of us, including myself, wouldn’t know who is he. Let’s now try using his stage name – Hulk Hogan. It’s the 1980s and pro wrestling, WWF, WrestleMania and Mr. T are all the rage. It is an easy guess that Hogan’s stage name originates from similarity to this famous Marvel superhero.
Hulk first appeared in 1962 in The Incredible Hulk #1. Dr. Robert Bruce Banner had been accidentally exposed to gamma rays which lead to his transformation into Hulk. Stan Lee himself said that the inspiration came from Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
Doctor Strange had also been created during the Silver Age of Comic Books. He first appeared in the Strange Tales #110 in July 1963. As it often goes with superheroes, his superpower abilities also came as a result of an accident, but this time the accident itself was just a catalyst.
After losing his arms, which is always a very bad thing, especially if you’re a surgeon, he decided to travel and find a “replacement”. He found more than what he expected and became the protector of the Earth against “dark magic”. The stamp motif depicts this in a very good way.
Before he became Captain Britain, we knew him as Brian Braddock. His story also includes an accident, and this time it was related to nuclear power. After an accident and the acquisition of the Amulet of Right, he became Captain Britain as we know him today. His main task was, as you could expect, to protect Britain, and he started doing that from October 1976 when he appeared in Captain Britain Weekly #1.
This comic book was also the first original content produced by Marvel UK (an imprint of Marvel Comics formed in 1972). This is also the first exclusively British superhero in this stamp series.
She loved adventure ever since she was a child. Her story continues as a code breaker of the British Royal Military and a special agent and a French Resistance fighter. Later she joins Captain America on several operations.
As a character, she was introduced for the first time in Tales of Suspense #75, May 1966.
The battle for the second place in Marvel superheroes popularity list is very tight. Still, I would say that Iron Man leads, with Captain America, Thor and Daredevil lagging not far behind. Maybe just one good blockbuster to boost their popularity. Meanwhile… Iron Man.
In the Marvel Universe, Iron Man is actually Anthony Edward “Tony” Stark. And no, he’s not related to the Starks from Game of Thrones in any way 🙂 (But we will have a GoT article also very soon.) OK, so he was a billionaire who got kidnapped and injured and that was his catalyst. In order to save himself, he created an armor, which he would later improve and use in his everyday actions.
His debut happened in March 1963 in Tales of Suspense #39 and 5 years later he got his own title – Iron Man #1.
He is T’Challa, king of Wakanda, a fictional country in Sub-Saharan Africa. His superhero status comes from the combination of science, training and a little help from herbs used in ancient Wakandan rituals.
He appeared in Fantastic Four #52 in July 1966 and was the first black superhero in a major comic book. Obviously, his appearance was extremely important and popular media played an important role in the struggle for equality once again.
James Montgomery Falsworth or Union Jack was created by Roy Thomas and Frank Robbin with his first appearance in Invaders #7 on July 1976.
In total, 3 men wore the mantle of Union Jack. Besides James (during World War I), other two were his son Brian Falsworth (during World War II) and Joseph Chapman, a working-class man to whom Joseph offered this position.
Thor is another character from the Silver Age of Comic Books. His first appearance was in Journey into Mystery #83 in August 1962.
His character was based on Norse mythology, or to be more precise on Asgardian god of Thunder with the same name. He has a super heavy hammer and the ability to control the weather. Maybe the most important weather manipulation he liked to performed was his famous thunder.
Thanos and the Battle Plan
For those who are not that into Marvel comics, Thanos is a supervillain and as such he’s not the one who could be easily defeated. Luckily, we have a bunch of superheroes at our disposal and they just need to agree on the right tactics.
This is what these last 5 stamps (the 5 with values) are all about. If you take a closer look, you’ll notice that everything is getting ready for a battle with Thanos.
When you think of stamp collecting, probably the first analogy would be an older guy, sitting alone somewhere in his room and looking at his 19th-century stamps. While that could be true, today we also have some new and very interesting stamps, like these issues by the Royal Mail, just waiting for you to add them to your collection. And with technology at our disposal as well as many means to swap stamps I can’t think of a reason not to!
Author: E. Drkušić / https://stamp.ninja
Pin collecting is a fun past-time, yet it may not be the first thing that pops into your mind when it comes to collecting.
Stamps, coins, bank notes, tickets… These are things you think about the moment hear the words “collector” or “philately”, pins probably don’t come to mind.
However, pin collecting is a hobby that is very popular amongst both young and old. Some choose to wear the pins while others cherish them and keep them in albums.
Does pin collecting sound like something for you? – Then you’ve come to the right place!
The first question you should ask yourself is: What kind of pins should I collect?
Some people go for art pins, others who are big fans of history and the story objects can tell, go for the vintage pins. Do you love the story behind the items or the way they look? Is there something in particular you love?
Some people collect Disney pins for example, others will collect everything and anything they can get their hands on!
Check out this fantastic article on everything you need to know about pin collecting if you want to learn more!
There’s no right or wrong when it comes to pin collecting, so this is something you can fill in for yourself!
Now, there are a few things you still need before you can start this hobby and that’s an album, and the pins themselves!
We have a few different choices for you when it comes to albums. On our pin collecting albums page you can have a look and see what your options are.
Keeping your pins in albums will allow you to sort them better and keep them in a much better condition.
Where you’ll find your pins depends on the type of collection you want to set up. A quick google search will provide you with a plethora of sites that sell new trendy pins. Another great place to find both new and vintage pins is eBay.
Etsy is another fantastic place to look for new pins to add to your collection. They will even have pins made by up and coming artists which may be a great addition to your collection depending on what you are collecting.
All in all, pin collecting is a fantastic and extremely dynamic hobby. Whether you will be wearing your collection one by one, or will enjoy them all within your album, there’s a lot of fun to be had.
This is hobby is less well known than some of the other collecting hobbies, but it does have a surprisingly divers range of collectables. Beer coaster collecting, also called tegestology, has a strong following, and is quite a popular collecting hobby all around the world.
The history of beer coasters
The beer coaster as we know it today, was patented in 1892 in Germany, to deal with the foam that often spilled over the glass when pouring a beer. These paper-pulp coasters were first designed to be thrown away, like stamps, tickets and most other collectables…
After they were invented, beer coasters became a great advertising method for breweries and thousands of variations soon appeared. It’s extremely hard to imagine how many different coasters there have been since, and this makes it a great item for collectors.
How to get into beer coaster collecting
Beer coaster collecting is an extremely easy hobby to get into, but finding and buying the rarer models isn’t as easy as it looks. This hobby greatly depends on the category you are looking to collect.
Some people may only collect coasters from a particular region, brewery or country, while other may collect them for the pictures they have on them. It all depends what suits your fancy!
A great resource to check out is Beer Coaster Mania! They have an overview of all things beer-coasters and have a wonderful site for anyone looking to get into the hobby.
What do you need to start collecting beer coasters?
Nothing is mandatory when it comes to beer coaster collecting as it’s all a matter of preference. However, a beautiful beer coaster collecting album <link) can make the hobby even more rewarding!
When storing your beer coasters make sure you store them in a cool and dry place, as this will ensure they stay in their best condition.
Beer coaster collecting
As you can see, beer coaster collecting is a great hobby to get into as a collector. Once your collection grows it’s extremely rewarding to browse through your albums and to watch your collecting grow!
Although drinking champagne is a fun past-time, collecting champagne caps is another way of enjoying this delicacy.
In this article, we are going to dive into the hobby of champagne cap collecting!
The history of the champagne cap
When champagne, otherwise called sparkling wine was invented, there was one problem with the drink. If the cork loosened or didn’t seal the bottle properly, then the champagne was left without the sparkling taste people so loved.
So, in 1844 the champagne cap was invented to ensure the cork stayed in place and couldn’t let any air through. Since then there have been a plethora of caps that have come onto the market, so there’s a lot to collect!
Variations in champagne caps
Since they have been around for so long, the variation in champagne caps is huge. Some caps are silver or gold, while others are hand painted or just very old. Some people collect caps from a specific region, while others go all out and try to collect as much as they can.
Rarity can make some caps extremely valuable and the history and story that some of these caps tell make it an ideal object for collectors.
Champagne cap collecting
Collecting champagne caps is a very rewarding hobby and it’s becoming ever more popular among avid collectors. It’s also a very easy hobby to get into, all you need is a good place to store them and you’re ready to start collecting!
Storing your champagne caps
It may be tempting to just find a plastic container and then start collecting, but there are a few things you should consider before you start putting them all in a jar or container.
The first, and most important thing you should take into account is that when you store them all in one container, the caps will get scratched and damage. This will not only deplete the value of your collection immensely, it will also make the caps less fun to look at.
That brings us to the second thing you should think about, and that’s your ability to view your collection.
It’s no fun to have a collection you cannot look at and appreciate. That’s another reason why a container isn’t ideal. Not only will it make it difficult for you to view your caps, if you do decide to take them out, you will damage your champagne caps even further!
How can you solve this issue?
An album especially designed for champagne cap collecting will work wonders. Not only are your caps completely save from any damage, you can also very easily view your caps when you want to enjoy your collection. Check out some champagne cap collecting albums, and see which one will suit you best.
Another great option is a champagne cap collecting display frame. This frame lets you display your champagne caps, so you can view your collection whenever you feel like it!